Janet Prescott reports from Florence

It may have been some time coming, but summer wool is a reality: that was one of the main messages of Pitti Filati where yarns and knitwear for Spring /Summer 2021 were on display.

Increasingly used in light fabrics, wool brings freshness, breathability and adaptability to summer clothing.

This is modern wool at its finest and we will surely see more as wool continues to lose its identification as a fibre suitable only for cold weather.

Pitti Filati highlights

La Lana d’Estate (“Summer Wool”)

Introducing fine micron yarn for fine-gauge knits, Zegna Baruffa Lane Borgosesia launched “La Lana d’Estate” or Summer Wool, a major project with The Woolmark Company.

The project highlights wool’s biodegradability and renewable qualities, enhancing many of the natural characteristics which make it so important currently.

From the Spinners

Summer season 2021 spinners have produced fashion yarns with multiple structures, printed surfaces, twists and dynamic looks brushed, twisted.

Natural fibres are in vogue generally, mixed with others, and woven or knitted in complex patterns.

The most on-trend sea blues and greens, as at Filidea and Marchi & Fildi, reflect environmental attitudes in art and fashion.

Waste Not

The re-use of pre- or post-consumer fibre of many origins is growing, and Sudwolle Group Biella Yarns, Filpucci and others had recycled wool ticketed to be RWS or Recycled wool standard. The recycled wool is usually mixed with new fibre.

Traceability Trends

The promise of fibre-to- end-product tracing came from powerful fibre producers, notably wool specialists ZQMerino, and Chargeurs whose Nativa wool is fully traceable. Botto Giuseppe and other spinners also hit on this in combination with virgin fibre.

Customise Me

Finally, customisation is finding enormous interest, aided by the CustomEasy area in the fair, where the dramatic embellishing of simple garments with the latest in decorative art and designs was demonstrated by the Knit Club manufacturers.

Sustainable Colour

Transparent yellows, gold yellow, tamarind, blue coral and an unusual blue purple led the field.

Many were dyed with botanical dyes at Alpes and IIF, with ancient recipes like chestnut, mimosa, and robbia (old English madder). Contrasts came with the bright splashes of eco-action sloganising in splashes of childlike red, orange, black and green.


Interesting wool mixes from the large Chinese Consinee Group included alpaca, mohair, possum yak and small amounts of manmade shine.

Glitter and glamour punctuated the natural fibre yarns, while lurex and sequins were spied breaking through puffy and chunky yarns.

Stay on the lookout for metallic elements, from small points of light to bold silver and gold threads woven in with wool for whole garment knitting often in diaphanous or transparent designs.